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Leaving Their Mark: Using Danish Student Grade Lists to Construct a More Detailed Measure of Historical Human Capital

Author

Listed:
  • Nicholas Ford

    (Lund University)

  • Kristin Ranestad

    (Lund University)

  • Paul Sharp

    (University of Southern Denmark)

Abstract

We provide a brief overview of the educational history of Denmark and document archival and printed sources covering the development of primary, secondary, and tertiary education. In particular, we focus on student grade lists, which are available for individuals at all levels of education from the early nineteenth century until well into the twentieth century. We suggest that these can be used to construct more detailed measures of human capital than those usually employed, making it possible to deconstruct aggregate education into e.g. knowledge of science or humanities, as well as to measure the extent to which this was actually learned, as captured by the grades achieved. Given the role usually attributed to human capital for development, and perhaps particularly with regards the Nordic countries, such data has the potential to greatly increase our understanding of how Denmark became the rich and successful country it is today.

Suggested Citation

  • Nicholas Ford & Kristin Ranestad & Paul Sharp, 2021. "Leaving Their Mark: Using Danish Student Grade Lists to Construct a More Detailed Measure of Historical Human Capital," Working Papers 0207, European Historical Economics Society (EHES).
  • Handle: RePEc:hes:wpaper:0207
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    File URL: http://www.ehes.org/EHES_207.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Lampe, Markus & Sharp, Paul, 2019. "A Land of Milk and Butter," University of Chicago Press Economics Books, University of Chicago Press, number 9780226549507, September.
    2. Nina Boberg-Fazlic & Markus Lampe & Pablo Martinelli Lasheras & Paul Sharp, 2020. "Winners and Losers from Enclosure: Evidence from Danish Land Inequality 1682-1895," Working Papers 0178, European Historical Economics Society (EHES).
    3. Ran Abramitzky & Leah Platt Boustan & Katherine Eriksson, 2012. "Europe's Tired, Poor, Huddled Masses: Self-Selection and Economic Outcomes in the Age of Mass Migration," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 102(5), pages 1832-1856, August.
    4. Peter Sandholt Jensen & Markus Lampe & Paul Sharp & Christian Volmar Skovsgaard, 2018. "‘Getting to Denmark’: the Role of Elites for Development," Working Papers 0125, European Historical Economics Society (EHES).
    5. Fischer, Martin & Karlsson, Martin & Nilsson, Therese, 2013. "Effects of Compulsory Schooling on Mortality: Evidence from Sweden," Working Paper Series 992, Research Institute of Industrial Economics.
    6. Peter Sandholt Jensen & Maja Uhre Pedersen & Cristina Victoria Radu & Paul Richard Sharp, 2020. "Arresting the Sword of Damocles: Dating the Transition to the Post-Malthusian Era in Denmark," Working Papers 0182, European Historical Economics Society (EHES).
    7. Marc Klemp & Jacob Weisdorf, 2019. "Fecundity, Fertility and The Formation of Human Capital," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 129(618), pages 925-960.
    8. Clark, Gregory & Cummins, Neil, 2016. "The Child Quality-Quantity Tradeoff, England, 1780-1880: A Fundamental Component of the Economic Theory of Growth is Missing," CEPR Discussion Papers 11232, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    9. Joshua Angrist & Victor Lavy & Analia Schlosser, 2010. "Multiple Experiments for the Causal Link between the Quantity and Quality of Children," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 28(4), pages 773-824, October.
    10. Peter Sandholt Jensen & Cristina Victoria Radu & Paul Sharp, 2020. "Standards of Living and Skill Premia in Eighteenth Century Denmark: What can we learn from a large microlevel wage database?," Working Papers 0180, European Historical Economics Society (EHES).
    11. Markus Lampe & Paul Sharp, 2019. "Accounting for the wealth of Denmark: a case study of Smithian growth using the emergence of modern accounting in Danish dairying," The European Journal of the History of Economic Thought, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 26(4), pages 659-697, July.
    12. Markus Lampe & Paul Sharp, 2017. "A quest for useful knowledge: the early development of agricultural accounting in Denmark and Northern Germany," Accounting History Review, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 27(1), pages 73-99, January.
    13. Hoyt Bleakley & Dora Costa & Adriana Lleras-Muney, 2014. "Health, Education, and Income in the United States, 1820–2000," NBER Chapters, in: Human Capital in History: The American Record, pages 121-159, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    14. Peter Sandholt Jensen & Cristina Victoria Radu & Battista Severgnini & Paul Sharp, 2018. "The introduction of serfdom and labour markets," Working Papers 0140, European Historical Economics Society (EHES).
    15. Ekaterina Khaustova & Paul Sharp, 2015. "A Note on Danish Living Standards through Historical Wage Series, 1731-1913," Working Papers 0081, European Historical Economics Society (EHES).
    16. repec:zbw:rwirep:0441 is not listed on IDEAS
    17. Parman, John, 2015. "Childhood Health and Human Capital: New Evidence from Genetic Brothers in Arms," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 75(1), pages 30-64, March.
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    Cited by:

    1. Pau Insa-Sánchez, 2021. "Inequality of Opportunity in Access to Secondary Education in 19th Century," Documentos de Trabajo (DT-AEHE) 2106, Asociación Española de Historia Económica.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Denmark; grade lists; human capital;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • I21 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Analysis of Education
    • N33 - Economic History - - Labor and Consumers, Demography, Education, Health, Welfare, Income, Wealth, Religion, and Philanthropy - - - Europe: Pre-1913
    • N34 - Economic History - - Labor and Consumers, Demography, Education, Health, Welfare, Income, Wealth, Religion, and Philanthropy - - - Europe: 1913-

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